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The body of a 19-year-old woman who had been missing for a month was found this week in the desert outside Phoenix, authorities said Wednesday.
Kiera Lanae Bergman’s body was discovered Monday afternoon near State Route 85 in Buckeye, the Phoenix Police Department said. Bergman, who was last seen leaving her apartment Aug. 4, was found about 45 minutes west of her home, Phoenix’s KPHO-TV reported.
“Right now, we’re just waiting for them to release the body,” Bergman’s father, Chris Bragg, told the Arizona Republic. “They are waiting for some specialist to come in. Once they release her, we will pick her up and bring her home.”
Police told the paper that this is an active homicide investigation and didn’t say whether any suspects had been identified. Police did not release details on how Bergman died or how long her body was in the desert.
An autopsy was to be performed by the medical examiner, police said.
Family and friends of Bergman wrote condolences on social media. One read: “My sunshine is gone.”
The day Bergman went missing, she had sent a text message to her roommate and best friend, Destiny Hall-Chand, saying she was meeting up with “some guy she met at a store,” KPHO reported.
Hall-Chand told the station the text seemed strange and out of character for Bergman.
The woman, who was originally from San Diego, had moved to Phoenix in March to be with her boyfriend, Jon Clark. During a vigil Aug. 11, family members told the Arizona Republic that Bergman had later broken up with her boyfriend and moved in with Hall-Chand.
Clark, 23, was arrested during the police investigation on unrelated charges, FOX10 Phoenix reported. A search warrant on the car he shared with Bergman turned up evidence of identity theft and forgery, according to reports.
Clark remained in jail on $25,000 bond, KPHO reported.
The investigation into Bergman’s death is ongoing, Phoenix police said.
Authorities asked that anyone with information regarding the case call Silent Witness at 480-WITNESS.
Fox News’ Travis Fedschun contributed to this report.